Jump to section
A Yorkshire Terrier puppy is a big ball of strength, courage, and independence in one tiny package. When your Yorkie is full grown, he could be anywhere between 3 to 6 pounds. He will not be very big, but his confidence and his bold behaviors will far exceed his size. If you are not careful with your Yorkshire Terrier at night while you sleep, he could tear up books, papers, mail, important documents, or anything else he might find, such as your couch or your carpet, and spread it from one end of the house to another. But if you train your Yorkshire Terrier to sleep in a crate during the night, he will not only have a place where he is confined, safe, and secure, but also quite comfortable for an entire night's sleep. Crate training your Yorkie for daytime activities will also help keep him entertained and safe while you are out of the house. Imagine the personal belongings you can protect when your Yorkie is well behaved and safe inside his own personal space!
Crate training your Yorkshire Terrier will take some dedication and lots of repetition. You should train your Yorkie to stay in his crate for night time sleep as well as any time you cannot keep an eye on him during the day. These times might include when you're out running errands, when you leave the house, or when you're at work during the day. If you're training a Yorkshire Terrier puppy, you will need to consider his house training while you're crate training. He will need to go potty every few hours until he's old enough to hold it all day. Your crate training should be repetitive and extremely rewarding. Be sure you are supplying your Yorkie with a small crate and comfortable bedding and toys to keep him comfortable, secure and entertained.
Crate training requires enough time with you in the house to train your Yorkshire Terrier to stay in the crate while he can see you, so he feels safe and secure. Your Yorkie is also going to work pretty hard for lots of tasty treats. Yorkshire Terriers are incredibly intelligent, so you can bet he will understand your requests for crate training, but because he's also incredibly courageous and bold, he may also challenge you and push back. Be sure you are equipped with an appropriate size crate. Your Yorkie will never be very big, so a small or tiny crate will suffice. Prepare your crate with soft bedding and fun toys for day training as well as night training.
The Safe Times Method
If you are able to be home during the day with your Yorkshire Terrier, schedule times to place him in the crate. These can be times you need to get chores done and can't keep an eye on your little pup, or they may be times your Yorkie is napping.
Put your Yorkshire Terrier in his crate after he has extended play time. Your Yorkie should be playing in 10 to 15-minute intervals throughout the day. While he's a little puppy, he will nap a lot. Be sure to take him potty and place him in his crate when it's time to nap.
Anytime you are busy with a task that takes away the ability to keep an eye on your Yorkshire Terrier puppy, put him in his crate. Even if he's not sleepy, you can give him a treat or a chew toy to keep him entertained and occupied.
Anytime you need to leave the house to run quick errands, put your Yorkshire Terrier in the crate. Just remember while he is very young he cannot be left alone in a crate for a long period of time because he will have to go potty every few hours.
When it's time for sleep at night, place your pup inside his crate and go to bed. Each time you place him in his crate before bedtime, give him a treat and be sure he goes potty before you bid him good night.
Getting used to it
The more you use your Yorkshire Terrier puppy's crate throughout the day and at night, the quicker he will get used to the idea of going into his crate on his own and the faster he will understand his crate is his safe place for him to be when you are away from the house or when he needs to sleep.
Do not hesitate to give your Yorkshire Terrier a treat every time you put him in the crate and each time you open the crate to take him out. This rewards him for good behavior while in the crate and helps him to condition him for using the crate day in and day out and throughout the day and night.
The Open Door Method
Introduce the crate
Place the crate in a busy area within your home. This area can be in your bedroom or in your family room. You'll want it to be a place where you and your Yorkshire Terrier will visit often.
Set up the crate
Set up your Yorkie's crate with comfortable, soft bedding and a couple of chew toys that are safe and quiet for him to chew on while he's waiting patiently to fall asleep or waiting for you to open the crate door.
Leave the door open
With the crate door open, introduce the crate to your Yorkshire Terrier puppy. Place a treat inside the crate and encourage your Yorkie to go in the crate.
Sit outside the crate
Situate yourself just outside the crate, leaving the door open. You can offer your Yorkshire Terrier another treat if you would like to encourage him to stay in the crate or you can sit there and talk quietly with him.
Leave him alone
At some point, once your pup has settled down a bit, get up and leave the crate. Leave the door open, leaving the choice to stay in the crate with your dog.
Anytime you would like to see your Yorkie go into the crate on his own, take him to the crate and place a treat inside. Let him get used to the crate with the door open for several days if possible. Once he's used to going in the crate on his own and you need to leave the house or it's time to go to bed at night, you can begin to close the door.
Your Yorkshire Terrier puppy will probably whine the first few times you close the door. If he is tired, he will settle down. If he is not sleepy it might not yet be time to close the door. If you need to leave the house, however, keep him in the crate and know he will settle down. Make sure he has a safe chew toy for entertainment and try not to leave him too long.
The Daytime Method
Place your Yorkshire Terrier's crate in a busy place within your house such as near your kitchen or in your family room. You want your Yorkie to hear the sounds of the house while he's napping.
Your Yorkie will nap a lot in his first several months of life. But he also needs to play. And playtime will wear him out, making him want to nap. Play with him for a bit before taking him potty and then lay him down to sleep.
Be sure to take your pup to his potty spot to go potty after playtime before his naps. You do not have to schedule naps for your Yorkie, just know he's going to be tired and sleeping a lot throughout the day.
Inside the crate
Place your Yorkshire Terrier inside his crate for his nap times during the day. If you catch your little Yorkie napping somewhere besides his crate, just pick him up and place him in his crate. Most days he'll be too tired to move, especially during these early months of life.
Anytime your Yorkshire Terrier is sleeping in his crate, close the door. Before opening the door to let him out, let him awaken and let you know he's awake by whining or barking.
As soon as your Yorkie is awake from his nap in his crate, take him outside to go potty.
Place your Yorkshire Terrier in his crate anytime you need to leave the house or anytime he is sleeping. When you are ready to move to nighttime training, begin to place him in his crate for night sleep as well. Remember not to leave your Yorkie in his crate for more than a few hours at a time while he's potty training to avoid any crate accidents.
By Stephanie Plummer
Published: 02/13/2018, edited: 01/08/2021
More articles by Stephanie Plummer